Another Normandy Bike Ride

Yesterday, my friend Adrian and I rode to Normandy dam and back again.  The day was moderately hot, dry, and a little hazy.  We’d intended to make an early start, but got delayed and left about 11:30 am.

Normandy-Dam-Boat-Ramp Adrian's-Bridgestone-Mtb Looking-Toward-Normandy

We took some pictures at the dam, and Adrian lost his anti-glare glasses after having put them on the rack of his new-to-him 1990’s model Bridgestone MB-6 Trailblazer mountain bike.  We searched for the glasses diligently, but could not find them. 

Normandy-Sky Open-Cafe-Razesa Razesa-&-Normandy-Trailer

On the way back, we stopped and had a quick lunch at the Normandy River Café, but we forgot refill our water bottles there.  Instead of making a longer loop and taking the relatively heavily traveled main highway back to our starting point, we decided to return by the steep, bumpy road down which we rode on the way out to the dam.  Upstream from the distillery, and without a herd of cattle between the spring and the creek, Adrian and I filled our water bottles from the swiftly running water by what I’ve been told is probably a sycamore tree.  I took a couple of swigs, and it tasted better than tap-water, but I was none too confident in its purity, so drank very little of it.


Because I’d failed to follow Gerry’s advice and get the gear-shifting, gear-popping problem tended to, I was unable to ride up the entire hill.  About a third of the way up, I lost momentum when, for about the fifth time, the gear/chain/sprocket-thing popped into a higher gear.

Bike Geometry

Most of the bicycle manufacturer’s websites I’ve visited have charts talking about frame geometry that mention tube lengths.  Lately, when looking at my bikes and photos of bikes, I’ve noticed the shape of the trapezoid made by the frames’ two triangles, and been thinking about wheelbase length, head-tube and fork angles, seat-tube angles, and manner in which all of those together affect a bike’s handling.  Sadly, I lack the math skills to think about these things in a way that facilitates the information’s meaningful communication.  Still, have a look at the angles in the photo below.


Normandy Bike Ride

Glass of Water with Lemon

Glass of water with lemon at Normandy River Cafe, Normandy, Tennessee

I’d planned to make this ride with my friend, Adrian, the guy who bought the nearly new condition old Bianchi last week, but he got sick and couldn’t make it.  The rough pavement on Cascade Hollow Road would’ve probably done for his bike’s original equipment 27 year-old (?!) Michelin tires, though.  My own bicycle’s Continental Gatorskin tires did fine, and it was a long way down that bumpy road.  At the bottom of the hollow is George Dickel Distillery – I snapped a picture of the company’s roadside sign with three birds next to it – I think they are wild turkeys.  An old man, probably somebody’s grand-dad, stopped me a minute or two later asking directions.  Spooky stuff, people.

Distillery Sign

Wild turkeys and George Dickel Distillery sign

George Dickel distillery

A pleasant morning in the hollow

I didn’t stop to take the tour, but pedaled on into Normandy where I stopped at a cafe that wasn’t open for the day, yet, and ordered a bowl of turkey chili and some ice-water with lemon.   I rode on through Normandy to the fish hatchery and to the dam.  It was a very windy, but otherwise pleasant morning for a bike ride.

Normandy House

Old house on the main street at Normandy, Tennessee

Normandy Cafe

That's me, smiling for the camera at the Normandy River Cafe

Normandy fish hatchery

Normandy fish hatchery on the Duck River

Normandy Dam

Watergates at Normandy dam